Actress Minnie Driver has resigned from her role as an Oxfam celebrity ambassador and corporate backers demanded accountability as the aid organization sought to address allegations that senior staff members working in crisis zones paid for sex among the desperate people the group was meant to serve.
The actress later said on Twitter that she was "devastated by the response" of Oxfam which she had been "raising awareness for since I was nine years old". It was revealed that the charity's workers in #Haiti were offering vulnerable people money for sex, essentially trading what they were there to do for free as charity on the donors' dime for sexual favours.
British actress Minnie Driver has quit her role as celebrity ambassador with Oxfam, sending a firm message to the charity, which is now enveloped by a sex scandal.
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Mordaunt also warned Britain would not partner with charities that do not hold staff accountable for their actions and are not transparent following allegations of a cover-up of a prostitution scandal at Oxfam.
More than 1,200 people have reportedly cancelled their monthly donations to the charity following the claims, first published by The Times.
Roland van Hauwermeiren, 68, was investigated by the charity Merlin, now part of Save The Children, after allegations about his sexual behaviour in wartorn Liberia in 2004. Teenagers can volunteer in Oxfam charity shops through the award.
Meanwhile, the International Development Secretary is to meet with the National Crime Agency following the Haiti sex workers scandal.
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A spokesman said: "Given the increase in the level of debate on the issue of sexual harassment we would expect more people will come forward and report things they have suffered or witnessed".
Britain's secretary for global development, Penny Mordaunt, said Sunday that the way allegations of sexual misconduct were handled by Oxfam was "shocking" and demonstrated an "absolute absence of leadership".
"The Oxfam Charity's CEO Mark Goldring (C-L) and Chair Caroline Thomson (C-R) leave the Department of International Trade and Development in London".
M&S, which has worked with Oxfam since 2008, said in a statement: "M&S continues to monitor the situation very closely as we seek to understand the steps that Oxfam is taking to address them and develop a robust safeguarding plan for the future".
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